phrases, sayings, idioms and expressions at

Phrases, Sayings and Idioms Home > Discussion Forum

Re: $64,000 dollar question

Posted by Bob on May 02, 2001

In Reply to: $64,000 dollar question posted by kirstie dunbar on May 01, 2001

: can anyone tell me the origin of
: the sixty-four-thousand dollar question?
There was a radio quiz program in the 1940s that became quite popular. Questions got more difficult, and the value of a right answer kept doubling 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, and (ooh!) the $64 question. The phrase $64 Question gained some currency. A television version in the 1950's upped the ante a thousand fold, which is why most people today remember the phrase as you do. The tv show was caught up in the Quiz Show Scandals of the time (see the movie "Quiz Show" for background) and the whole genre was out of fashion until recently revived by the current craze.